In this week’s example of setting the bar really low, Brexit Secretary David Davis has assured us all that leaving the EU won’t result in a Mad Max style dystopian Anglo-Saxon race to the bottom. That’s reassuring then. This was David’s Road to Brexit speech. We already knew that the road to Brexit was the Fury Road, it’s just that no one had expected they were going to be quite so literal about it. Although to be fair the signs were there from the beginning and we should have been forewarned. Nigel Farage does look suspiciously like a cleaned up Toe Cutter in a suit come to think about it. Davie has been criticised for likening Brexit to Mad Max, but screaming people who’ve lost every civilised thing they hold dear strapped helplessly into rusty wrecked vehicle with no brakes which is careening towards an explosive crash with a cliff face is a pretty good analogy for how the Brexit negotiations are going. However the vehicle does have “£350 million a week extra for the NHS” written on the side of it, so cheer up Remoaners.
Brexit has moved on from promises of an extra £350 a week for the NHS, freedom from faceless EU bureaucrats, and delivery into the sunlit uplands of taking back control, to assurances that starving peasants scavenging rusty car parts in the post-apocalyptic Brexit wasteland are not actually going to beat one another to death in the Thunderdome while Theresa May does an impression of Aunty Entity. The really scary thing here is that this is the most realistic thing about Brexit that David Davis has ever said, everyone knows that the monotone Theresa May has a crap singing voice. When they promised us a Brexit boom we didn’t think that they meant that big explosion which destroyed Aunty Entity’s petrol tankers.
Anyway, the British establishment was keen to tell us that Scottish independence would be cataclysmic for the entire world, so by comparision a British Mad Max doesn’t seem so bad. But the oil is running out, as they’ve been telling Scotland since the mid 1970s. So Brexit won’t be like Mad Max at all, because Mad Max still had some petrol. We shouldn’t worry too much anyway, as Davie had a distinctly Anglosaxon dystopia in mind, which possibly means that the Scots, the Welsh and the Northern Irish have bailed out and left the Brexiteers of Westminster to their own devices, devices which they have cunningly fashioned out of the sort of wreckage that you find in a scrap yard.
More likely Davie’s mention of Anglosaxons means that our Conservative masters have forgotten, again, that the non-Anglosaxon parts of the UK exist, which if you ask the Scottish government happens all the time. It’s not like the Tories have our interests at heart, even if they did have a heart to have our interests in. The real reason that the Conservatives made it so difficult for MSPs to get a look at the British government’s Brexit impact papers was because all they said was, “See that movie The Road? The one with the cannibals? Like that. But on the plus side we think that we can turn benefits claimants into a thriving meat export industry. So it’s not entirely bad.”
We don’t need another hero, but even if we did it sure as hell wouldn’t be the Brexit Secretary. His pronouncement this week is the worst example of expectation management since a plastic surgeon promised a patient that their face lift wasn’t going to leave them looking like Michael Jackson. When the Brexiteers promised us freebooting free trade deals we didn’t think they literally meant that we’d all have to become land-pirates. Jacob Rees Mogg is pretty pissed off about Davie’s remarks, as it means he got his nanny to bolt a flame thrower onto the Bentley for no reason.
Davie’s speech has opened up breaches within the ranks of the Brexiteers, as some of them were favouring other post-apocalyptic scenarios. Iain Duncan Smith had been hoping for more of a Hunger Games theme, which was after all his inspiration for the changes he made to the social security system, although he is prepared to concede that Immortan Joe proves that people with disabilities are fit for work. Michael Gove had his heart, or rather what passes for his heart, set on Waterworld as then the fact that he bears a striking resemblance to startled goldfish would be an evolutionary advantage. Meanwhile Boris Johnson had been holding out for a Lord of the Flies scenario, as he wants to be the king of a small and isolated island. On the other hand, in the Mad Max wasteland the disgraced former defence secretary Liam Fox is ideal for the role of Lord Hummungus, and that means he’d have to wear that full face mask so the rest of us wouldn’t have to see his smug grin ever again. So that’s a plus. It certainly puts a new spin on faceless bureaucrats.
This is the same week in which Boris Johnson reiterated his plan to build a bridge across the English Channel. Well I say ‘plan’, what I really mean is attention grabbing click bait headline. Boris is quite convinced that it’s possible to build a Channel Bridge out of recycled lorry parts, corroded shipping containers, and the bones of dead benefit claimants, but then he’s also convinced that he’s prime ministerial material.
Back in the real world, of course the UK won’t end up like Mad Max after Brexit. It’s silly to say so. We don’t have the climate for it. It will be more like Planet of the Apes, which you can already see a foretaste of on Duke Street in Glasgow during the marching season in June. Those are after all the people to whom the Scottish Conservatives are pitching their message.
Anyway, David Davis was correct about one thing in his speech. Brexit is not a race to the bottom. In a race you need competitors, and as far as Brexit is concerned, the UK is very much on its own. The British government can’t solve the problems that the UK is facing, they are the problem. David Davis and his colleagues are heroes that we certainly don’t need.
The Wee Ginger Dug has got a new domain name, thanks to Indy Poster Boy, Colin Dunn @Zarkwan. http://www.indyposterboy.scot/ You can now access this blog simply by typing www.weegingerdug.scot into the address bar of your browser, the old address continues to function, the new one redirects to the blog. The advantage of the new address is that it’s a lot easier to remember if you want to include a link to the blog in leaflets, posters, or simply to tell a friend about it. Many thanks to Colin.
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